Magical Travel with Heather Collea
|Posted on May 22, 2015 at 2:00 PM|
It all started with a Mouse
Last month I had the incredible opportunity to travel to Disneyland for an Agent Education Program. I was so excited because I had never been to Disneyland! What, you say, you've never been to Disneyland??!? Yep, that's right, it was my first time at Disneyland. I guess I just didn't get what the big deal was. My thoughts ran along the same lines as other's...it's smaller, there's not as much to do, it's the same rides, it's so far away, we have Walt Disney World and it's better. But guys, let me just tell you, those thoughts are wrong!!! Walt Disney World and Disneyland are not the same. Just because you have been to Walt Disney World does not mean you've been to Disneyland. I didn't get it before but I do now and I hope it is something that I can get across to you. I want you to go to Disneyland. It is its own experience and its own magical moments, and...it is the original. You walk on the same ground Walt did when he made his dream a reality. And that should be reason enough for you to go. But in case it's not enough, here are the 10 reasons you should go to Disneyland and why I will return again and again with my family.
10. It's not called sunny California for nothing!
According to this site, California is the number one state for the best weather. In order to the make the list "each state has places that meet these best weather criteria: Comfortable temperatures, with daily highs averaging between 63 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit for seven or more months of the year. Dry weather, at most 60 inches of rain a year. Mainly clear skies, with sunshine for at least 60% of the time." I am sure we all have experienced Florida summer heat...the oppressive heat, humidity, daily thunderstorms. Yuck! Give me sunny California any day! Now don't get me wrong, I love Florida, but if I had a choice...
9. No magic bands or planning fast passes 60 days in advance.
Disneyland still uses the old system. For some this might be considered a negative. But for some, this is a definite pro! It's still the good old way in California. You know how you used to see everyone in Florida with the lanyards that contained their key, tickets, etc. before magic bands? Well, that's what you will still see in Disneyland. No magic bands to mess with. And as for fast passes? There is no planning fast passes days in advance in Disneyland or DCA (Disney California Adventure). You just walk up to the ride you want a fast pass for, stick your card in and a fast pass is spitted, sputted, whatever you want to call it, back at you. Voila! You have a fast pass.
8. Disneyland has excellent relations with its Good Neighbor Hotels.
There is no competition. They work together. Disney wants to make sure that they meet all the needs and budgets of their guests! If a hotel is given the Good Neighbor title, you know that it has to meet the strict standards Disney expects! The Good Neighbor Hotels also share close proximity to the parks. You don't want to find yourself in a hotel a cajillion miles away from Disneyland and DCA. And often times you can even find special offers for Good Neighbors. Want more information? Click here.
7. You can include more in your package than just Disneyland and Disney California Adventure.
Since the resorts and parks are so intimate in California, you will find that you can enjoy most of what Disney has to offer in 3-5 days. This is great for lots of folks on the west coast. But if you are an east coaster, like I am, you tend to think I don't want to fly all the way out there and be done in 4 days! But this is what makes Disneyland so awesome! You can add on additional packages to enjoy your trip longer! For example, there is a San Diego Getaway that you can add! This package can give you an opportunity to stroll through quaint Old Town, dine in the historic Gaslamp Quarter, or visit such famed attractions as the San Diego Zoo®, San Diego Zoo Safari Park and SeaWorld® Adventure Park, LEGOLAND® California, and Sea Life Aquarium™. Or if that doesn't float your boat, you can enjoy a southern California Vacation Package! In Disneyland, you can make the most out of your vacation! It's your choice! Read here to learn more about additional packages.
6. The attractions are not the same.
Of course, the parks do have different attractions. Everyone knows that. But even the same attractions are not the same attractions. Say what now? For example, both Disneyland and Walt Disney World have the attraction "It's a Small World". But the two are actually different! Yes, it's the same song. But what you see on the exterior and the inside are different! For example, some of the dolls in Disneyland's version are actual versions of some Disney characters! You can find Mulan, Peter Pan, or Cinderella, to name a few. So now you can't say anymore, the attractions are the same, because, nope they are not! Make it a challenge to find the similarities and differences in the two!
Exterior of It's a Small World at night
5. Disney California Adventure is like nothing else at Walt Disney World
Cars Land!!! It. Is. So. Awesome!!! The Radiator Spring Racers! So fun! And Disney California Adventure is not all about Cars Land either. Part of DCA looks like a boardwalk theme park named Paradise Pier. There is also a part that pays homage to the Pacific northwest named the Pacific Wharf. You also have Grizzly Peak which looks and feels just like the Grand Californian Resort. In fact, you can walk right out of the Grand Californian and step right into DCA, no monorail, no bus, just one step and you're there! Can you say the same thing for Walt Disney World?
4. You can walk everywhere.
There is an advantage to staying at a "smaller" more intimate park. You can walk everywhere, literally! I stayed at the Disneyland hotel and every afternoon after our meetings we would walk from our hotel through the Downtown Disney District and make a left or right to enter Disneyland or Disney California Adventure. No bus, no car, no monorail, no tram. Just your own 2 feet. There are only a few resorts I can say that about with Walt Disney World. But no where in Disney World can you reach all parks and downtown Disney on your own two feet. Pretty nice. When you park your car or exit your transfer vehicle, say sayonara to those modes of transportation because you will not need them again until it's time to leave or you choose to add a vacation package to your trip.
Oh, wait, you can ride the monorail in California. You can take the monorail from the Downtown Disney District into Disneyland. But you can also walk
3. Disneyland and Disney California Adventure do in 2 parks what Walt Disney World does in 4.
Okay, get this! This blew my mind! There are the same number of attractions in Disneyland and California Adventure Park as there are all of 4 of Walt Disney World's! Yes, so again, you have the same number of attractions in 2 parks (which are right beside each other) that there are in 4 spread out parks in Walt Disney World. I never knew this! I just thought that because they were only 2 parks in California that it was smaller, that there was less to do! Yes, I am eating my humble pie! All of the times I said, "but Disneyland is so smaaaaalllll". Can you hear my whiny voice? I feel like such a whiny loser now, lol!
2. DisneyLand is celebrating its 60th Anniversary!
60 years! That is a long time to be the happiest place on Earth! And you only get to celebrate 60 years once. So why wouldn't you want to be a part of that? So much is planned for this event! There is a new parade called Paint the Night and a new fireworks extravaganza called Disneyland Forever and a new World of Color! (World of Color is kind of like Fantasmic, but waaaaay better. Plus Disneyland has its own Fantasmic, which I heard was better than Hollywood Studio's version. I didn't get the chance to see and judge for myself. But given that I was wrong about a lot of other things, I would probably say it's true). I have also heard rumors that every day they are picking one family or one guest to win a variety of prizes, such as a night in the Disneyland Dream Suite or a big butt diamond. Wouldn't you love to be that lucky guest?! You can read more about the Diamond Celebration here.
1. And the number one reason? It is the original.
Walt worked here. He lived here. He dreamed here. Though Walt started the plans on Disney World, he never got the chance to actually see it come to fruition. And therefore, we will never have the opportunity to share in his footsteps at Disney World. But we can in Disneyland. I know this sounds corny. I would have thought what's the big deal? But, it really is something. It's a feeling, a touch of magic. Maybe it's because we think if one man can build his dream, why can't we all? I don't know, I can't really put it into words. But I had chills run up and down my arms when I was there, thinking about Walt and his vision. I was able to visit his apartment that he lived in while he was building Disneyland. (Yes, the very one above the fire department, the one with the lamp in the window that shines 24/7.) And while in the apartment I became teary eyed listening to our cast member talk about Walt and his family life and Disneyland. And I wasn't the only one trying to discreetly wipe tears away. The moment affected everyone in our group. He was just such a good man and one who believed in family. Walt was able to do what few others have been able to do, to make a dream a reality. I think it's something everyone wants, to have a dream come true, but not something we often get to see come true or experience. But Walt made it so that we can experience a dream, even if it's someone else's. In that moment, it just feels like its ours. And to walk in Walt's footsteps and experience it in such a grand way... well, I still get chills! I know I'm not doing it any justice trying to put it into words. But trust me. It is just something you have to experience!
(The apartment tour is no longer available, so it is not something you can do. BUT there is a tour called Walk in Walt's Disneyland Footsteps Guided Tour that will take you other places just as fabulous. Click here to learn more about it.)
Did I convince you? I really hope so! I really fell in love with Disneyland and I hope everyone gets to experience the original park that started it all...Disneyland. But just in case you need a little more enticement...
In honor of Disneyland's 60th anniversary and Disney's 24 Hour Summer Kick Off Celebration, I am offering a $50 gift card and Disneyland 60th commemorative gift to the FIRST THREE people who book a DISNEYLAND Southern California vacation with me. This is an exclusive offer through me only. You must book a package (package includes hotel and park tickets). Prizes will be sent with your travel documents approximately 1 month before your travel date. This offer does not include Walt Disney World in Florida.
One last thing, remember that Good Neighbor Hotel offer I mentioned a little while ago? Well, how about an offer on top of an offer? Disney currently has this promotion going for Disneyland! Plan a 2-Night/3-Day Disneyland Resort vacation at a Good Neighbor Hotel starting at $99 per person per day for a family of 4. Includes 3-Day, 1 Park per Day Disneyland Resort tickets. For arrivals most nights 8/30 – 10/1/15 and 11/1 – 11/23/15
Saving money and winning money, what could be better than that? If interested there are a number of ways to reach me. You can fill out the contact form here on my website. You can email me at [email protected] Or you can call me at 704.813.1358
I hope to hear from you soon! But until then, have a magical day and